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Author Topic: James Russell  (Read 17924 times)
Pete Ferling
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« Reply #40 on: August 14, 2008, 11:37:43 PM »
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Ray
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« Reply #41 on: August 15, 2008, 12:57:23 AM »
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Following from my previous comment on phallic symbolism, those of you who are particularly naive might find the following quotes informative, and even humorous   .

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Ties which both hang flaccidly from the neck to the groin like a penis, and also point to it, are the very symbol of the phallus, which is so envied by other men and women not for its actual qualities, as much as the social meaning attributed to the gender of its owner. The tie is thus a symbol of the domination of men over women, and of power in general.

To those who wear it to work the tie is a burden, another rule to follow in a workplace dominated by rules and regulations.
It represents the very essence of discomfort, as it applies light pressure to the very tube we all require to breathe, reminding the drones of our life sentence to capitalism by tie-hanging, of how much our lives are owned and controlled by the elite, and how much our very life force is maintained because of our servitude to another class.
Wearing a tie, we don't feel free, or look free, donning an article required of many workers regardless of their individuality or creative abilities.
The very essence of conformity!!

I have never, ever felt comfortable wearing a tie. Not even as a school boy.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2008, 12:58:53 AM by Ray » Logged
Ray
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« Reply #42 on: August 15, 2008, 03:17:53 AM »
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Since the demise of the Rob Galbraith Forum, there seems to be a lot of professional photogrpahers who have migrated to LL. That's no problem for me, and I welcome the different perspective. But, I would just like to emphasise in this post that it is a different perspective, not a better perspective. In fact, if I were to indulge in my own prejuduces, I would say that it's an inferior perspective. However, realising that that's a biased perspective of mine, I won't say that. So let's be clear. I didn't say that.

What strikes me about the MFDB 'mob' (if I can describe them as that. It's a term used to describe a group of Kangaroos), is the 'sameness' and 'predicatability' about the images. We're not into fine art, here, but crass art, commercial art, lowest-common-denominatore art, phaliic symbolism art.

That's fine by me. As I've said before, I'm no prude. But an observation I would make, is that an increase in the cost of gear does not seem to translate to an increase in the meaningfulness and spiritual worth of the images produced. In fact, the trend seems to be to the opposite. The more expensive the equipment, the more garish, the more crude, the more blatantly sexual the images. (Michael, of course, is excluded from these comments because he is clearly into fine art.)
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Rob C
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« Reply #43 on: August 15, 2008, 03:46:44 AM »
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Ray, most of the time I find it easy to agree with you. Of late - since the #1 episode - I find you seem to have slipped into a parallel universe to your own, normal, one.

It might be the heat, the humidity, even the rice water; it isnīt a comfortable period.

The complaint about professional photography might well be partly true, insofar as I think that much of what I see today, in fashion/beauty, is way too over-produced, too retouched, devoid of much humanity or appeal. But I donīt know if thatīs because todayīs lensmen over-enjoy playing with their new toys or because art directors or agencies or even cients think that it is cool for women to look like waxworks. I like skin to look like skin; that never means that it has to look unhealthy or pockmarked, just that it should have texture.

I would love to get the female photographer point of view, particularly from any women working in fashion/beauty.

Rob C
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Ray
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« Reply #44 on: August 15, 2008, 04:11:47 AM »
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Ray, most of the time I find it easy to agree with you. Of late - since the #1 episode - I find you seem to have slipped into a parallel universe to your own, normal, one.

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215165\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

No, no , no! I'm very stable and always in the same universe.  

The crux of the matter is, if you are working for a client, you have to satsify your client.

If you are working for yourself, as I am, the results will be different.
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woof75
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« Reply #45 on: August 15, 2008, 07:29:52 AM »
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Ray, to think that sex and sexuality isn't a subject for an artist really shows an absolute lack of understanding what art is.
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picnic
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« Reply #46 on: August 15, 2008, 08:14:39 AM »
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I'm also rather amazed that anyone would think my phallic interpretation of that scene is unusal or weird.

Clearly, any shape that is roughly of similar proportions to the erect penis does not have to be considered as a phallic symbol. However, when such shapes are inflated (or deflated) to an unnatural size, and then directly associated with a scantilly clad (or provocatively clad) female, then the sexual symbolism is clear to all, except perhaps those who have never heard of Sigmund Freud, or those who simple don't know what sexual symbolism is.

The symbol for #1 is not usually larger then a female person. The enlargement of the symbol for #1, in relation to the size of the female who is hugging it, is very obviously suggestive of the enlargement that takes place when a penis becomes erect.

The enlargemnt of the #1, in conjunction with its general shape, should make the phallic associations obvious to all except the totally naive.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215123\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Of course I know about Freud, for heaven's sake, but his ideas are looked at a little askance these days.  He saw a phallic symbol in almost everything it seems whereas Jung sometimes sees a thing for more or less what it is.  And---just look how you had to extrapolate that #1 so everyone would 'get it'.  Sometimes a big #1 is just that LOL.   The point, as I understood it, was to get across that Phase is #1---so big was called for---and you can't grab a guy's attention these days without a sexy model (and 99.44% of these cameras will be sold to guys).  Sometimes what is----is.
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Pete Ferling
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« Reply #47 on: August 15, 2008, 08:34:07 AM »
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #48 on: August 15, 2008, 09:34:38 AM »
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I'm also rather amazed that anyone would think my phallic interpretation of that scene is unusal or weird.

..............................

The enlargemnt of the #1, in conjunction with its general shape, should make the phallic associations obvious to all except the totally naive.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215123\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Well, you won't be amazed by me, because I thought your interpretation is simply nonsensical. And if that makes me "totally naive" so be it. I'll "naively" believe James Russell's definitive response to this far-fetched notion. This thread has been developing some interesting conversation about the relationship of art to commercial photography and about the demands and expectations of the contemporary business environment as it affects commercial photography. But this purient tangent - as far as I'm concerned - is really devoid of value-added.

Mark
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Ray
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« Reply #49 on: August 15, 2008, 09:41:19 AM »
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Ray, to think that sex and sexuality isn't a subject for an artist really shows an absolute lack of understanding what art is.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215195\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Woof75,
It's you who is showing a great lack of understanding. There's not a single sentence in my 5,000 odd posts that could be construed as a disapproval of sex as a subject for an artist.

My comment about James Russell's Phase One phallic symbol does not relate to any disapproval of the sexual connotation, but an amazement at the obvious and blatant nature of the phallic connotation, and as Diane as just written, the fact that it has to be explained to some of you.
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Ray
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« Reply #50 on: August 15, 2008, 10:06:52 AM »
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Well, you won't be amazed by me, because I thought your interpretation is simply nonsensical. And if that makes me "totally naive" so be it. I'll "naively" believe James Russell's definitive response to this far-fetched notion. This thread has been developing some interesting conversation about the relationship of art to commercial photography and about the demands and expectations of the contemporary business environment as it affects commercial photography. But this purient tangent - as far as I'm concerned - is really devoid of value-added.

Mark
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215229\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Mark,
I am amazed by you. But rather than knock my interpretation, would you care to provide a more meaningful interpretation which you think is not nonsensical?

Just to recap, in case you've forgotten the image, the image selected by Phase is of a giant number one about twice the height of a person. It's on a pedestal, roughly synonymous with a pair of testicles, and has an over all shape roughly similar to the erect penis.

Now, if this monument was surrounded by a group of bespectacled boffins and accountants, it would be just as silly but wouldn't have quite the same sexual connotation.

However, the fact that this mock erection has received the attention of a semi-clad, attractive maiden makes the symbolism as obvious as one could possibly make it without producing a pornographic image.
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woof75
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« Reply #51 on: August 15, 2008, 10:19:51 AM »
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The more expensive the equipment, the more garish, the more crude, the more blatantly sexual the images. (Michael, of course, is excluded from these comments because he is clearly into fine art.)
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215158\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Surely this suggests that you are disapproving of sexual images? You are linking blatant sexuality with crudeness and garishness. Can you give me a list of approved subjects please Ray, just so that I know?
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Rob C
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« Reply #52 on: August 15, 2008, 10:20:52 AM »
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obvious and blatant nature of the phallic connotation, and as Diane as just written, the fact that it has to be explained to some of you.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215231\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Um, Ray, I think she was pointing it out to you...

However, on a personal note, I think that women are the most interersting things on the planet - well, perhaps challenged by finer Italian cars - but otherwise, my sole interest in photography today, in the rôle of retired pro, is the photography of women. Unfortunately, living on this Mediterranean rock, they (pro models) are in short supply and thus prone to unreal conceptions of self-worth and consequent monetary value.

The direct reslut of all of this is that instead of taking substitute pictures of rocks, trees, the sea, the mountains, I spend the available time on the internet writing to you guys or otherwise waiting about in Godīs ante-room for that magical day when a muse will arrive and lift me from my lethargy. Fortunately, I have the sense not to hold my breath.

Are women valid artistic subjects? Seems that they have been considered so from the earliest times, even by the church, though possibly in a hypocritical manner. I have never enjoyed photography more than when in the middle of a great shoot, studio or outdoors. And I have never felt more lonely than at the end of said shoots when the model goes home and Iīve been left in the studio alone to get the processing underway. When it cooks, itīs a wonderful bond of shared emotion, but it can leave you drained for a while. Perhaps I always took it too seriously for a professional.

Rob C
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Ray
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« Reply #53 on: August 15, 2008, 10:39:26 AM »
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Surely this suggests that you are disapproving of sexual images? You are linking blatant sexuality with crudeness and garishness. Can you give me a list of approved subjects please Ray, just so that I know?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215240\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

It seems logic is not your strong point. I am linking blatant sexuality with crudeness and garishness, but it's you who are linking that to disapproval.

Blatant sexuality is a fact of life. We're no longer in the English Victorian age. I'm just describing James Russell's image as I see it. It's no worse than lots of other images I see from MFDB users, and as a an image that get across a certain message without resorting to outright pornography, it's quite successful.
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Ray
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« Reply #54 on: August 15, 2008, 10:46:12 AM »
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However, on a personal note, I think that women are the most interersting things on the planet - well, perhaps challenged by finer Italian cars... [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215241\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I'm afraid we disagree on that point, Rob. Given a choice between a fine Italian car and a fine woman, I'll take the woman.

However, I think that many women would choose the fine Italian car in preference to me   .
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woof75
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« Reply #55 on: August 15, 2008, 10:56:05 AM »
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It seems logic is not your strong point. I am linking blatant sexuality with crudeness and garishness, but it's you who are linking that to disapproval.

Blatant sexuality is a fact of life. We're no longer in the English Victorian age. I'm just describing James Russell's image as I see it. It's no worse than lots of other images I see from MFDB users, and as a an image that get across a certain message without resorting to outright pornography, it's quite successful.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215252\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Yes, everyone thinks of garishness and crudeness as good things Ray.
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #56 on: August 15, 2008, 10:58:05 AM »
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Mark,
I am amazed by you. But rather than knock my interpretation, would you care to provide a more meaningful interpretation which you think is not nonsensical?

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215235\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

OK, my last word on this tangent, because I can't justify more time on it: My simple, "naive" interpretation is that the number "1" is there so that you associate it in your brain with "Phase 1", and the model livens it up with human interest in order to attract people and engrave it in their memories within that 4 seconds attention span so much discussed here. Other than that, James Russell has very adequately explained the etiology of this image so no more really needs to be said about that.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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Ray
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« Reply #57 on: August 15, 2008, 11:07:50 AM »
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Yes, everyone thinks of garishness and crudeness as good things Ray.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215255\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Well, some people seem to divide everything into either good or bad. Are you one of those?

The Webster's definition of crude, first two words:

Unripe; immature.
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Pete JF
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« Reply #58 on: August 15, 2008, 11:20:09 AM »
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Don't worry Ray, there's a dick in the numero uno, you're not seeing things..well you are seeing "things" but you know...

I also see a stripper pole, complete with stripper(ish) person (the shame of that stereotype of a woman in a mini skirt sort of grinding on a pole..reprimand me). It's a stripper pole would be unwieldly by any stripper's standard...That girl looks like she's about to fall! Her balance is wrong plus she needs some climbing shoes and some chocks to accomplish this. Most strippers would run at the sight of that thing.

Funny how a discussion of the phallus brings on the denials and shushings, general frowning.

Mark DS..nonsensical? It's pretty darn obvious. I could bring you twenty teenage boys, teenage girls, grown up men and grown up women women who would laugh and KNOW what it was they thought was going on here.

Is it wrong that they bring that baggage to it? Not at all and the discussion of commercial work vs. art is an empty one without a long rest on the subjects of sex, eroticism, phallic symbols. On and on, c'mon, what kind of art are you folks looking at??

A huge part of the basic vocabulary of art, throughout history, has much to do with eroticism.

James knows he hasn't invented a new vocabulary here...you could go online right now and find a bunch of images with a monolith, or phallicky looking object with a figure draped over it in a sexually suggestive way. Car ads, a woman's hand on a beer glass..the list goes on and on and most folks GET this right away...it's been beaten to death in discussion, forever,  confirmed and with an official stamp.

Ray is correct, the vocabulary here, whether James intended it this way or not, is pretty damn obvious. We are not in control of how the audience responds to the work and that is the beauty of the entire thing....

Like Bernd and Hilla Becher suggested in there work...we are ALL the same but we are ALL a little bit different. Some folks saw the phallus in their groupings of water towers etc..phallic, manly structures..who gives a flip and I'm sure they got a giggle from that and smiled a bit. they understood that it was exactly what they were suggesting when they compared industrial designs...it was a human thing in the end and it carried through to the various responses people have to their images.

I choose to think it's expected and in some ways a profound statement on the power of symbolism. If you see a phallus in the big number one with the girls leg clutching up..is there anything wrong with that? The image, IMO, begs for that type of, perhaps, over simplification..This is one of those images that you might see discussed in an edition of Sex and Advertising.


James I'm sure when you guys were shooting this project there was more than one joke made by the various crew members..male and female. If your crew didn't make any jokes about it then   might need to look for another crew.    

The subject might be off topic in the context of this thread but when i saw the image i knew immediately it would pop up...if it hadn't i would have been very surprised and disappointed. Amusing to me how a bunch of folks are resisting this and tucking their shirts in very carefully.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2008, 11:52:58 AM by Pete JF » Logged
Ray
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« Reply #59 on: August 15, 2008, 11:24:04 AM »
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OK, my last word on this tangent, because I can't justify more time on it: My simple, "naive" interpretation is that the number "1" is there so that you associate it in your brain with "Phase 1", and the model livens it up with human interest in order to attract people and engrave it in their memories within that 4 seconds attention span so much discussed here. Other than that, James Russell has very adequately explained the etiology of this image so no more really needs to be said about that.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=215259\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Mark,
I sense a certain censorious attitude. Nobody who is not already familiar with Phase One, associates the number one, an extremeley commonplace and ubiquitous symbol, with a high tech DB manufacturer, without the blatant sexuality that is obvious in this image.

The human interest is interesting primarily to the male because of her obvious sexuality and what she's doing.

Sorry if I've embarrassed you   .
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